Take Action: Urge Congress and the White House to Reject Discrimination
On December 18, despite strong opposition from the Iranian-American community and other groups, Congress passed an annual spending bill that included discriminatory provisions of the visa waiver reform bill (H.R. 158) that target Iranian dual nationals and those who have traveled to Iran.
As the visa waiver program is reciprocal, the 38 countries participating in the visa waiver program could now enact similar restrictions that turn Iranian Americans into a second class of citizen when traveling abroad.
Together, we sent over 81,000 messages to Congress – and a bipartisan group of Senators came out in opposition to the dual national language. This issue was raised at the highest levels of budget negotiations, but House Republicans would not back down.
Fortunately, Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) has signaled that there were problematic provisions and that Congress will likely consider fixing the changes in 2016. The Obama administration, as well, has suggested that it might be able to utilize a waiver to mitigate the impact of the bill.
The fight is not over. We need to capitalize on our momentum and urge Congressional leaders to introduce legislation repealing the provisions discriminating on the basis of nationality and targeting our community.
Take action today to tell the Congress and the White House to reverse this discriminatory law!
This is all part of a three step process from NIAC Action to stop this law from impacting you. Here’s what we are doing now:
1) We are in communications with the White House and have worked with allies to formally call on the President to waive the visa restrictions on Iranian Americans and travelers to Iran.
2) We are talking to the most senior officials in the EU Foreign Ministry and will formally urge that the EU avoid reciprocal steps that would punish dual nationals and adopt alternative proposals we are developing.
3) We are engaged in serious discussions with Members of Congress to take legislative action to reverse these provisions. New legislative initiatives in the House and Senate will be rolling out in the weeks to come.